In a leaked audio clip that has gone viral, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong can be heard firing Abel Lenz, the creative director of AOL’s Patch.com — in front of 1,000 co-workers in the middle of a conference call.
On Friday, Armstrong hosted a conference call with Patch employees to explain that AOL was reducing the number of sites in the local news network from 900 to 600. During the call, Armstrong paused to address Lenz, telling him to “put that camera down right now.” Soon after, Armstrong says, “Abel, you’re fired. Out.”
After a short silence, the conference call resumed.
Armstrong went on to complain about leaks to the media, saying that the leaks made Patch.com look like “loser-ville” in the press.
“That’s why Abel was fired,” Armstrong said. “We can’t have people that are in the locker room giving the game plan away.”
According to various sources, Lenz always took photos during Patch meetings and would later upload them to Patch’s internal news site.
Listen to the leaked audio below.